Security researcher urges caution before installing Windows 7 Service Pack 1

According to Krebs, the service pack is mainly a bundle of previously-released security updates.

This means "that if you are staying up-to-date in security patches, you are not going to gain much by installing this service pack, which contains a few uber-geeky feature improvements that are mostly a bonus for users of Windows Server 2008 R2 - not Windows 7", he said in his latest security blog.

"My take? I'd say that the main benefit of this service pack for Windows 7 users would be if you were considering re-installing the operating system for some reason. In that case, Service Pack 1 would streamline the process quite a bit. Otherwise, I would urge Windows 7 users who are up-to-date to ignore this offering, at least for now", he adds.

Krebs goes on to say that, if you decide to go forward with this Service Pack, there are several important considerations, particularly if your system has certain hotfixes installed.

For example, he notes, Microsoft says that systems with hotfixes (2406705, 979350 or 983534) will block the installation of the service pack and may experience problems as a result.

"Microsoft doesn't exactly make it easy for you to figure out which hotfixes you have installed", he said, adding that the software giant's own Technet forum post on this service pack includes a number of cautionary tales from users who have installed this update.

Also, he notes, the SANS Internet Storm Centre is keeping a running tally of issues and conflicts that users have reported.

"For example, some users are reporting that certain types of third party firewalls and disk encryption software may be affected by the service pack", he said.



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